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Airbus A320 crashed in Southern France

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Airbus A320 crashed in Southern France

Old 25th Mar 2015, 13:35
  #561 (permalink)  
 
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@founder

Thank you for the reply. I guess there are just too many variables, sensor loops, and redundancy circuits to make a wholly reliable and viable single system that would do this.
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Old 25th Mar 2015, 13:36
  #562 (permalink)  
 
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Besides that, many pilots feel it's a very palpable breech of their privacy. If you work at an office you wouldn't like your boss to know Every. Little. Detail. about what you do, right?
Sorry, I don't seem to have an option to quote people (unless I'm missing something)

MrSnuggles... This is pure presumption, but I thought the only time these recorders were accessed was after a disaster? Surely no contents of the CVR or a video alternative are accessible to "the bosses" on a routine basis?
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Old 25th Mar 2015, 13:38
  #563 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Denti View Post
Business jets do have automatic descent for depressurization. But i don't know of any airliner that has that feature. Dunno why, but one reason might be the very different usage rate per year for airliners compared to business jets.
That's probably rather due to the fact that most current Business jets have much higher max ceilings (>/=50kft). At those altitudes TUC is practically non- existant, read zero. Therefore such devices are practically a necessity if you don't want to fly with pressurized oxygen mask in cruise and want to stand any chance in case of decompression.
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Old 25th Mar 2015, 13:40
  #564 (permalink)  
 
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I agree, but we should also talk and think about what is missing: signs of significant fire at the crash site. Even high-energy crashes like this will show signs of charring, more than the smoke here and there we are so far seeing. Why would that be?
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Old 25th Mar 2015, 13:42
  #565 (permalink)  
 
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I find the concept of an automatic descent due to (insert failure scenario) , especially given the possibility of nonsense input which could trigger same, not a little disconcerting.
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Old 25th Mar 2015, 13:47
  #566 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by midiron View Post
Even high-energy crashes like this will show signs of charring, more than the smoke here and there we are so far seeing. Why would that be?
Good question. I haven't seen a trace of the Center Wing Box so far in the pictures. Nor a mark in the ground where it hit. In all previous cases of such frontal impact that I have seen pictures from there was a visible ground mark featuring the silhoutte of the aircraft to some extent. Maybe the main impact spot was outside of the areas shown in the pictures in detail.
Additionally, Engines at flight idle for 8 minutes will have cooled them down significantly. Maybe that also contributed to no major ignition.
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Old 25th Mar 2015, 13:47
  #567 (permalink)  
 
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TRTJ said:

I am not a pilot, I work in sensortronics.

Is there anyone in the know that could shed any light on if TAWS (terrain avoidance) or GCAS (ground collision avoidance system) will one day become automatic? I know NASA developed a system for the usaf but I doubt if it's commercial yet. Obviously if unconsciousness was the issue by this point of proximity to terrain it wouldn't be much help which leads me to my next question...

Could the emergency descent procedure be initiated automatically by the A/P in case of sudden de-pressurisation? This would leave the pilots' with severely reduced mental capability only one task. Oxygen. It seems emergency descent is the only option in case of extreme pressure loss, so why not make the initiation phase (flt level, heading etc) automatic, and immediate. Obviously this would have to be a highly redundant sensor system as you don't want spurious pressure readings leading you into an unwanted descent!
Emergency descents are not triggered automatically. Very few things are automatic and rely on pilots to know their memory drills well. Some newer aircraft have the ability for automated TCAS responses (e.g. A380). None (I know of) have automated TAWS, I guess that is because false TAWS alerts aren't unknown.

I think a lot of the reasons things are not automated is because incidents tend to happen in the grey areas where there are complex failures where simple (consistent) solutions may not always be the best option. That's why the Captain is a crusty old sort with millions of hour experience, who is able to use his/her professional judgement to save the day.

Last edited by demomonkey; 25th Mar 2015 at 14:08.
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Old 25th Mar 2015, 13:48
  #568 (permalink)  
 
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Lapp

You are the only one here claiming that no forced pressure is needed at high altitude when wearing a mask. Other people provided much more complete and authoritative postings than your, and to these nobody objected.
But he is still wrong. Take a look at this Embraer 145 manual, using the standard Eros oxy system.

.. Only normal (N) oxy selection is required for all flight conditions, and it is normally diluted.
.. Above 33,000' the mask auto switches to 100% oxy.
.. (The valves sense the pressure. Note that it says if there is a depressurisation the mask will auto revert to 100%.)
.. There is a backup manual 100% switch, if you require.
.. But constant flow (emergency selection) is only required to prevent the pilot breathing fumes.
.. (That is why it is called 'emergency selection', and not the 'above 35,000' selection'.)

This is what our system says too, if I can find the book...

http://www.smartcockpit.com/docs/OXYGEN_E1.pdf

Again, if you have a reference that says something different, then please provide it.
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Old 25th Mar 2015, 13:49
  #569 (permalink)  
 
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What can we expect from BEA this afternoon and in this case?
Press conference due this PM.

In the context of the supposed AVHerald comments re windscreens and CVRs the ex-head of BEA on French TV making great pains to point the protocol for handling the CVR and that it's unlikely at this stage (midday, 24 hours after the accident) that anyone has actually listened to it.
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Old 25th Mar 2015, 13:50
  #570 (permalink)  
 
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the_hawk how probable is it for pilots to regain consciousness during descent (when reaching appropriate flight levels)? does it depend on the duration of unconsciousness
Depends on the time and altitude both at alt and at lower (recovery) altitude.
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Old 25th Mar 2015, 13:54
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silvertate

Read TSO-C89 (ETSO-C89 in EASA) and CS-25 for the standards required.

If the aircraft is certified to cruise above a certain altitude it has to be fitted with pressure breathing regulators to meet the required pressure and flow rates.

I'm not going to copy paste but if you really want to know you will find them.

Last edited by FE Hoppy; 25th Mar 2015 at 13:55. Reason: added EU ref
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Old 25th Mar 2015, 13:55
  #572 (permalink)  
 
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demomoney:

Emergency descents are not triggered automatically.
They are in some high end business jets if the crew doesn't take action and the cabin altitude rises above a prescribed value.
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Old 25th Mar 2015, 13:57
  #573 (permalink)  
 
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@trtj

The idea that a system can be created that could save an aircraft out of any thinkable emergency situation is a dream come true, to me that sounds like Artificial Intelligence that knows where it is, whats happening to it and also be able to adapt to it in order to save itself and not just rely upon pre-programmed commands.

I have no doubt that it will one day show up on the market, but I also think it'll take a very long time before we get there...

Autoland was developed and implemented in the 60's and aviation has still not perfected even that. I have had several unsuccessful autolands where we, the pilots, had to take over because the system could not cope with the sudden changes in environment such as downdrafts sudden change in crosswind etc.
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Old 25th Mar 2015, 13:57
  #574 (permalink)  
 
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To sp3ctre:

MrSnuggles... This is pure presumption, but I thought the only time these recorders were accessed was after a disaster? Surely no contents of the CVR or a video alternative are accessible to "the bosses" on a routine basis?
This was the gist for installing the CVR in the first place. Sadly, there are a few companies that sometimes use the CVR and FDR data to monitor pilots' performances and attitudes towards the employer/the job/etc so while it is not a standard procedure, there has been instances where "the bosses" have been poking around even though no accident has occured.
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Old 25th Mar 2015, 13:59
  #575 (permalink)  
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This bothers me. Here we have a flyable aircraft with an incapacitated crew. A CLEVER aircraft full of computers. It knows it's cabin altitude and it's altitude. It's got a terrain database. It's got a GPWS. It can tell if it's been suddenly depressurized. It's under control. But it can't automatically fly itself down to a safer altitude and then avoid terrain on autopilot?

Same as AF447. The aircraft KNOWS it's got a great chunk of weather in front of it. It should be expecting turbulence and icing and prepare itself for possible associated problems such as temporary loss of airspeed sensors.

In November a 321 relied solely on aoa info and dived the plane down. What about crosschecking with Inertial input and GPS input? Again, half a job of automation.

The systems people need to widen their view and concentrate not just on the minutiae of up down left and right but on the big picture.
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Old 25th Mar 2015, 14:00
  #576 (permalink)  
 
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@aterpster

Could those systems be in place in those aircrafts because TUC (Time of Useful Consciousness) is so short at the altitudes where those aircraft operate?

Manufacturers could load those aircrafts with billions of systems, but in the end who is going to pay for it? The customers doesn't seam to be interested in doing that... they're not even willing to pay for reasonable contracts for the employees onboard...
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Old 25th Mar 2015, 14:00
  #577 (permalink)  
 
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Besides that, many pilots feel it's [cockpit video] a very palpable breech of their privacy. If you work at an office you wouldn't like your boss to know Every. Little. Detail. about what you do, right?
Many folks are on video recording at work at all times. Cashiers, bank tellers, etc. in particular. And they are only responsible for a bit of cash, not hundreds of lives.
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Old 25th Mar 2015, 14:09
  #578 (permalink)  
 
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EXP DES

This button has been disabled on all A320-FAM A/C at DLH since before 2000, because of possible inadvertent high descent rate if used unintentionally.

Only a few old A319s at GWI still have this button... But definitly not D-AIPX
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Old 25th Mar 2015, 14:12
  #579 (permalink)  
 
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If they lost a windscreen, they'd get a 400kt blast in the face of air at -40C or so.
Getting your mask on and establishing comms as per the checklist would be challenging to say the least. They may have initiated the descent but a 400kt breeze could easily rip the mask off your face. The noise would preclude any communication either in the cockpit or with ATC.

It would be a terrifying enough scenario without considering the possibility of potentially fatal consequences if the windscreen, or parts of it, came back into the cockpit. The cold air and wind may cause you to keep your head down below the coaming. If that was the case, you may not recover in time to look up and see the mountains looming large...
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Old 25th Mar 2015, 14:15
  #580 (permalink)  
 
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Hoppy


Read TSO-C89 (ETSO-C89 in EASA) and CS-25 for the standards required.

If the aircraft is certified to cruise above a certain altitude it has to be fitted with pressure breathing regulators to meet the required pressure and flow rates.
Yes, and this document says that the max altitude for diluter-demand oxy systems is 40,000 ft. And for simple pressure systems, up to 45,000'. As I said, the normal (N) diluter-demand setting is good for all altitudes, unless you are above 40,000' which this aircraft was not. So your point is?

https://easa.europa.eu/system/files/dfu/CS-ETSO.pdf
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